A total of 24,661 senior citizens have been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) since the PinasLakas campaign started on July 26.
In a media briefing Wednesday, Department of Health (DOH) officer-in-charge said the government aims to protect 90 percent of the elderly population through the vaccination drive.
“So, this is just 2.03 percent of our targeted population for our primary series for senior citizens,” she said. “Malayong malayo po iyan doon sa tina-target natin na dapat per day may 17,000 plus na (That is very far from the target per day of 17,000) accomplishments.”
For the first booster dose, Vergeire said the DOH has reached over 2.1 million individuals or 8.82 percent of the targeted eligible population of 23 million.
“Wala pa rin pong rehiyon na nakakaabot ng at least 50 percent coverage dito po sa ating ginagawang (No region has reached at least 50 percent coverage in this) PinasLakas Campaign,” she said.
However, the National Capital Region has reached 47 percent vaccination rate, the highest among the regions.
Earlier, the DOH conducted a survey to identify why fewer people want to be vaccinated against Covid-19.
Apart from lack of access to vaccination sites, Vergeire noted that some individuals still believe that Covid-19 jabs could cause harm to their health.
She said this factor is especially true for the senior citizens.
“Marami na raw silang ibang sakit at kakaunti lang daw ang kanilang natitirang oras dito (They have other ailments already and they have shorter time to live), so they don’t need the boosters anymore,” she added.
The DOH has presented to the Centers for Health Development in different regions varying strategies to increase vaccination coverage.
It also requested various medical societies to help push the campaign for booster doses.
“We are planning for a special week of vaccination drive for the whole Philippines this coming end of the month of September,” Vergeire said.
The DOH, through the special vaccination week, hopes to achieve at least 50 percent of its PinasLakas drive targets to increase the wall of immunity in the country.
As of Aug. 28, about 72,476,610 individuals are fully vaccinated and 17,843,348 have received their booster doses. (PNA)